Updated: Oct 23, 2020
TWEET! TWEET! There goes the whistle. Tweet! Tweet! RUN… get on the end line, sprint, drop and give me 20, one more lap, go… go… go!
Those are sounds and words recognized in gyms, on fields, and in stadiums everyday after classes.
The life of a student-athlete is a unique privilege shared by few teens. As student and athlete both titles are cause for celebration and pause. Many student-athletes, struggle to understand the precarious nature of their lives from both perspectives.
They’re not regular people. To remain both, hard work and dedication must be given to each craft. Being a student-athlete is highly stressful.
The burden of being a student-athlete can cause emotional and psychological distress, lead to academic failure, lack of time for developing interpersonal relationships and participating in fun activities, etc.
One major stressor is the effort needed to remain a good student in order to play sports. There are hours on hours of homework, studying to get into college, time spent practicing the sport, competition preparation, competing at events, dietary restrictions, and so much more.
You may ask yourself, how do they do it? It’s a balancing act that many do not succeed in doing and fewer still, understand.
While some student-athletes use their duality to gain status amongst their peers. Others do so as a way to propel their lives in the direction that best benefit themself and their families. A popular goal is getting a scholarship to pay for college.
Wherever your student-athlete falls on the line, know that they face a lot of stress and need positive ways to deal with it.
There are a few things that you can do to gain a sense of what your student-athlete is facing.
Ask your student-athlete what causes their stress?
Ask, how they are coping with and balancing the enormous strain of being a student-athlete
What primary concerns are they facing?
Ask, what you can do to alleviate some of that stress?
Student athletes can deal with stress by developing a routine that they can adjust when necessary. But, know that it is their foundation and they can return to it after any disruption.
You can help your highly stressed student-athlete by recommending they:
Set consistent bedtimes and wake-up times
Have a morning meditation session that sets them up for daily success
Make the bed when they wake up
Do a random act of kindness
Eat nutrient rich foods as much as possible
And don’t forget… ask for help
They’re not getting paid, but they must work hard and sacrifice a lot to succeed.
Remind your student-athlete of the importance of having structure in their lives. It makes the journey as smooth as possible for them to be their best student-athlete selves.
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